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Cutting David Harris smart move for the future

Sep 21, 2015; Indianapolis, IN, USA; New York Jets linebacker David Harris (52) and defensive end Leger Douzable (78) force a fumble by Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck (12) in the second quarter of an NFL football game. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 21, 2015; Indianapolis, IN, USA; New York Jets linebacker David Harris (52) and defensive end Leger Douzable (78) force a fumble by Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck (12) in the second quarter of an NFL football game. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
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The New York Jets have cut veteran David Harris, and it’s a good move for the future of the franchise going forward.

Linebacker David Harris has been a good foot-soldier for the last 11 seasons with the New York Jets. He’s seen the team go through a lot of changes. The team has had the same number of head coaches, general managers and playoff appearances (three) since he donned the green and white for the first time.

Harris learned the cruel fate of a good foot-soldier, though. He has learned something he probably already knew. Sometimes, it’s all about the money. He’s been officially released due to issues over both sides coming to terms on a pay cut.

His release is actually good for their future, even though they are losing a quality veteran voice in the locker room. With Harris’s contract now off the books, the Jets salary cap situation goes from the red to the green (no pun intended). Now the Jets have around $4.5M is cap space.

According to Metro NY’s Tony Williams, the Jets and Harris’s agent had been working on a salary cut, but negotiations fell apart:

He was slated to earn said $6.5 million this season and the team reportedly tried to work out a pay cut despite none of that salary being guaranteed. When those talks broke down, Harris got the ax outright, meaning this transaction has the smell of a cost-cutting move.

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That does them no good in the immediate future, but it does help them in 2018. How? It’s very simple.

There’s a relatively new provision that allows teams to carry over unused cap space from the previous year into the new year’s cap space. The Jets can’t use the space immediately, but they can in 2018.

The extra cap flexibility could help them land key free agents in 2018. The Jets want to build their core through the draft.

With that said, they also need to combine that with adding free agents to be successful. The timing is odd, but it shouldn’t be a surprise. It may seem like a bad move in the immediate future. However, for the long-term, it’s actually good for the Jets.

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